Holy crap, January is over.  We’re 1/12th done with 2013, can you believe it?  Last year this time I had already raced twice, now I’m looking at 4 weeks until my first little race – call it mostly a second monthly threshold test – and I’m just getting my feet under me training again.  What a difference a year makes.

I still feel very confident in the direction this year is taking.  Daily preparedness.  Weekly accomplishments.  Monthly goals.  These things are helping.  Consistency.  Focus.  Determination.  This is how I’ll get there.  Long term results are what I’m seeking, for I have patience.

January Goal Progress:

1. Eat mostly fruits and vegetables….Do things to get to the goal of 175 by the end of the month. ~1500 calories of good quality food should do the trick.

I happened upon Racing Weight and decided to follow that instead rather than a calorie restrictive diet.  Life changing.  The weight loss is going slower, but it is WORKING in a way which is absolutely sustainable all season/life.

2. Batch cook each weekend to have most of my meals for the week ready.

Check!  It was awesome, except when we tried to cook too much and it took 5 hours and was frustrating.  3 meals per week, so we get a few times we can go out and a few times we can make fish/something non batch cook-y.  This is going to be our ace in the hole for the year.

3. One day of drinking per week max.  Attempt for that to not be a marathon 8 hour session to cram all the fun in.

Not check.  It’s been a weird month, and while some of you may come to enlightenment through meditation or whatnot, I get to clarity at the bottom of a bottle of wine.  However, I can report that I did not drink so MUCH at each instance, and I did not forget to eat dinner and get myself into trouble.  Baby steps.

4. Schedule at least one game night at the house with friends.  Do at least one “out of the house” activity that doesn’t involve drinking.

Check! Game night was so much fun!  We want to do this once per month or so.  We also did dinner and a movie with friends as well which was nice.

5. ZERO cigarettes.  Use my little happy puffer thing.  Try to stick to the 0 nicotine one as much as possible.

Check!  OMG!  I am so thrilled about this.  I have not been one month cig free since I was in my teens.  I’m to the point where I cannot ever ever imagine having another smoke.  I’m still getting some nicotine, but that’s it.  I’ve read some articles that nicotine and caffeine aren’t that dissimilar (when delivered without all the extra chemicals) and that in small doses, it’s not so horrible for you.  I still would love to completely leave it be someday, but this is the next step.  I can DEFINITELY feel it in the pool, I used to have a PULL in my lungs when I got going, now I don’t.

6. ZERO sweet treats this month.  If I want desert, it can be fruit, yogurt, or arctic zero.  Das it.  I need one of these type of months to get off the “white pony” and back to the point where I can consume it responsibly.

Check!  I think I’m going to stick with this.  It’s negative points anyway and since I do get some sugar immediately before/during/after some workouts, I don’t miss sweets that much (though you can’t really chow down a piece of key lime pie on the bike).  I may allow ONE treat each week if I can justify it with my diet score, or super duper special occasions.

7. Train with my heart rate monitor every time.  I need to get in this habit.

Check!  It’s been somewhere between useful and frustrating to have this data staring me in the face, but I am waiting for the dark magic to happen and it’s not going to unless I keep at it.

8. Consistency.  My brain is REALLY raring to get back to those 3-5 hour training days, which is a great sign that offseason did exactly what it was supposed to do, but my body is NOT.  Do the workouts on my schedule as prescribed, and don’t add because it’s scary to only be training 6.5 hours (including 1.5 hours of weights) this month as prep.

Check!  After we got going, the hours were enough.  Killing myself in the weight room also helped.There may have been some sessions we wanted to extend (especially bikes) but overall I feel like I’m training just fine for 3 months outside tri season with the first up being a super sprint.  Next month changes a bit so that will be fun!

9. Get my sewing machine set up and at least put some stitches into something

Check!  Just barely though… I am now at least intrigued though still intimidated, but I can touch it without feeling like I’m unworthy of it… 🙂

10. Clean out our closet and get a bunch of stuff donated.

Check! We cleaned out the closet, and it’s all organized!  Wheee! We have things bagged up at my ‘rents house for my mom to go through before we visit the Will of Good.  I’m counting it though!

11. Investigate Scuba Certification and set a time to get it done.

Check!  Targeting Feb 11-14 for the course and then Feb 23+24 to do the dive cert parts.  Zliten just needs a doctors note since he has mild allergy induced athsma and that comes next week.

12. Get my damn eye exam.  It’s been way too long.  Had it scheduled for over the break, but my back being fucked made me have to cancel.

Check (scheduled)!  I go tomorrow.  Good adult me.  I just realized this week, my glasses are scratched so it’s really time for me to get off my ass and do this.

13. Cheer for runners at 3M on 1/13.

Check!  We went and cowbelled the fuck out of our corner, however, the “feels like 30” temps made us pack up and go home before the whole crowd passed us.  But, we tried!

13 seems like a good number, so let’s do this again for February!

1. Maximize diet score, minimize calories when possible.  Get there by pre-planning your day of eating.  It looks as if a 30+ score (top is around 33) is achievable with around 1800-1900 cal when all the food is good food.  That should maintain a bit of a deficit (and grow a little this month with some extra hours).  I’ll try to stick there.  Weigh less than 183.2 (yesterday’s weight) by the end of February.

2. Volunteer at Austin Marathon (t-shirt exchange) Feb 16, cheer Feb 17.

3. Have two days in Feb where I just veg most or all of the day.  Quix-y needs some downtime!

4. Get scuba licensed!

5. Mend something on the sewing machine or make something simple.

6. Finish the sewing book, start a fiction book.

7. Get living room set up with new furniture, organize DVDs and area around the TV, and the mantle (Feb’s “zone”).  Determine whether painting and/or rugs are necessary.

8. Keep up the things I did in Jan that I want to maintain, have a game night, no sweet treats (minus once a week), no cigs, HR train, batch cook.  They are habits now, just dedicating this goal to keeping them up.

9. Make a training plan for Feb and nail each workout.  Incorporate running and biking drills in this month.  Incorporate a little gentle speed work in this month.  Enjoy the hell out of my recovery week in 4 weeks.

10. Race the Indoor Tri 2/24 and DO NOT GET DEPRESSED ABOUT THE RESULTS.  I’m talking to you – self!  Last year, you were trained up for a half marathon+ and never lost fitness from the tri season.  This year, you are just coming off two months of pure base building after a wonderful offseason.  DO NOT GET PISSED BECAUSE YOU DIDN’T BEAT EACH DISCIPLINE FROM LAST YEAR.  Compare the results to last month’s threshold tests rather than 2012.  And if you beat last year’s times, then fuck yeah!  Either way, no tears and enjoy the first bottle of race champagne this year.

11. Sign up for half of all the triathlons.  Rookie, Pfluger, PlayTri, Couples, and Jack’s.  Next month we can drop a few more benjamins on the rest.

12. Keep doing that confidence and forthcoming about what I want thing at work.  Don’t get devastated if it doesn’t result in unicorns and rainbows right away.

13. Walk up and down the stairs every day with Zliten at break.  It’s good for me to get away from my desk.

That should do it!  I’m really tired today because I’ve had crappy sleep for the last few days, so I’ll get on all these tomorrow, kthx. Just kidding – I’ve got my food planned out for the day and my training plan done, so there’s that.

Question of the day:  What’s your February goal?